Architecture : Game of Thrones

World of Imagination
Television series Game of Thrones has created a set of imagined spaces and realised them in a conscripted form of Architectural history.
It is not stationary but adds its own vision to it, forming the world it inhabits.
Outside of reality imagined sets of Cities, Interior worlds, Ampitheatre and Theatrical overtures are clamouring to focus the viewers attention on storyline and plot. Narrative drives everything from the Throne itself and many sublet versions of it make the story follow the money or the gore.
The alterations in ownership of the top of the pyramidical structure is wrought for all it’s worth. Space and control of it are primary edicts.

The world of nature and environment are the primary winners and humans have their own constructions on it.

The seminar set up by QUB Architectural Society I attended had as it’s title On the theme ‘Journeys in Architecture’ – the Physcology of Space with reference to the Production of Game of Thrones given by Deborah Riley it’s Art Director. (Note the psychology spelling mistake of the poster – it rarely entered the psychology in any case)
Never far away are actual pyramids and the ancients. From the film I recently viewed, Sunset Song, symbols are also referenced though these are in the form of megaliths and standing stones. Ancient reference. Here instead Game of Thrones acts out the Alexander, Roman and Moorish examples of architectural artifice.

Conceit is always thrust forth as the mental, psychological, imagination in flight. Birds, three eyed or binary are roll called to stir the emotional wizardry and supposed shared worlds of control and magnitude of spread of territory. Likewise the roots of nature are entwined into preternatural creatures, here in rhododendron bush branches laboriously honed sanded to configure and clasp as the rooted body of a key character are extensively relied on to convey this otherworldly vision. Outside of visual digital conception this is arranged as a epoch making manifestation of series style.
Nature endures. Nature endures. Foremost is this primary truth yet the series is a purvey acne of artifice and untruth with the counter narrative of we see the world outside the reality or imagination driven to the viewer.

Is it a cast back to the theatrical illusions and distortions often seen in three dimensions in an auditorium or outdoors at night at an Ampitheatre?

I think this two dimensional treatment forgets it’s delivery is into living rooms or large screen darkness in a audio visual suite. Potentially the architecture is diminished and tokenistic. Any elaboration is taken as artifice for what it is alongside the digital visual lift shed upon the screen.

Detail is so important as a statement and substantiation of the theme or direction of concept. Through my short viewing of the series I often note the absence of drapery or tapestry and the gilt pictorial representation present in all cultures. Neither sculpture or art works are there any indications of higher art. Each of those is only present in a slightly formalized way, with dogs, wolves, no wall hangings and elsewhere in tiling and geometrical mosaic like depiction.

A lot of referencing to the Albert Speers, Frank Lloyd Wright, both psychological practitioners, were raised by the designers working on Art direction and underwhelmed being so familiar as erecessitive style icons. Also hinged into the work is religious beginnings with little or no spiritual delivery or significance. A kind of consumerism enters.

It’s possibly unfair to cite a TV series as anything of bearing on the practice of architecture. Civilizations real have sought and corrupted the art just as a corruption of talent and ideas for as long as it has existed.
It has existed alongside the sublime to the ridiculous.
For a series though it has the element of embracing thought and the imagined potential which otherwise remains unaccomplished. It’s service is not aspirational or inspirational but as a means of observing what world thoughts have a presence on our psyche. It is not a noble examination but merely a snapshot illuminating the human condition flawed or otherwise.
Of the 20th Century some buildings went so far as to redefine in timeless and awesome beauty and incredible execution of higher things and none so brilliant than Coventry Cathedral by Basil Spence.

Into this building and I rate it more significant and better than anything produced by Jean Genet, Jorn Utzon or anyone else regarded at the height of architectural expression, their is a collaborative element like no other.
Sir Basil Spence like so many architects in previous centuries called upon artists and craftsmen to deliver into this building the real composition of a whole. The participants where Graham Sutherland and John Hutton.
There is the cluster of triads on the ‘Bishop’s throne from the inspiration of Sir Basil Spence who alighted on a complex thorn geometric frame in Graham Sutherlands house as unifying his idea to simplify and create choir canopies, the throne backdrop and horizontal pull from the chancel onwards the high nave windows.
The vertical depiction of thorns as a canopy to the throne becomes transformative. It’s as though the thorns become birds. There is also the sculptors Elizabeth Frink, whose lectern is an astonishing eagle of perfect scale and presence. Even the grid to rest the Bible upon is an open grid frame. It is perfection. Ever present is the work of Sir Jacob Epsteins whose imagery is at once the gravitas and supreme heraldry of The Cathedral in its portrayal of St Michael and the devil.
Looking back on these things now is like looking at the origins of the work of Michelangelo. Sir Jacob Epstein was working at a time after conflict and great loss of human life, was re-evaluating on behalf of a Church which was soon to attempt its own transformation alongside its fellow traveller the Catholic Church whose Vatican 2 was in the potential making.
He therefore uniquely placed to envision on the cliff face of this impediment, this mere cliff face of a building reaching towards the sky as a unifying, one spire like edifice to awaken lost souls. I say impediment because it is a space we are drawn to and we cross an imagined boundary into it. That is we take in its thrall. Entering a tomb for the living to reflect and return to themselves having sought the power instilled in them by God.
The vision created by the unity of vision which Sir Basil Spence brought is still overlooked in its entirety. To have said in the trenches off Normandy in 1944 when asked what his ambition was, under the consciousness of the bereavement of war and of obvious reflection on the waste of mankind he said, and it is true not folklore, “to build a Cathedral”.
The Church of England was the the musician of the orchestration of the Phoenix it was once the host of. From the Coventry of Lady Godiva to now return to creating a new church was its necessary task. Such were the enthusiasm of the Bishops and Holy Family empowered with conceiving of this instrument to play before God they were richly rewarded with inspiration not least to fasten upon the developing skills of the Architect Sir Basil Spence. Even from the beginning what we now think of as the Graham Sutherland tapestry owes its presence to the initial sketches including the figure of Christ in tapestry at the focal alter place of the imagined Church.
It was an outstanding vision no doubt borne out of deep reflection and concern of the cost of war, this new expression of love and hope with a reticence and design of omission of artifact and iconography hitherto present and faintly if not entirely plagiaristic.

We are lucky to also have in Ireland parallel works by the late renowned Architect religious practitioner Liam McCormick. His influences personal and of wider perspective have a fellowship unmistakably in harmony with Spences.

Sir John Pipers stain glass windows are a vector of light inspiring the interior and the effect is muted while gloriously effecting response to the kaleidoscopic abundance of elemental worldly existing things and evoke things of unimagined presence yet to be discovered.
So many combined to author this magnificent Building while understanding the importance fiction only aspires to intemperately and transgressively.
Forms are not two dimensional transitory things is one lesson Architecture teaches us. Transfiguring. Articulating. Expressing. Editing and observing are calculations due evidential conception. The art of deploying to a work by which ever chosen method is a bridge to the materialisation of the sum of those ideas given to the imagination.

The materiality is found shaped in the many combinations, juxtapositions, combinations and support of separate materials. In the following is an illustrative, evident, example.

Forming the glass screens and the stained glass windows where key and delicate decisions of choice and instilled the renaissance of religion into a city bombed into oblivion. An act of extraordinary resurrection was the weight and burden challenging the theologians who were to use the building and bring the common man to turn to God in desperation after the horrors of war and one within the sight of God.
So profound was this challenge it barely takes a word to dismiss Game of Thrones as a mere token of time driven pretence of no significance at all.
The lack of psychology in the talk despite its form was probably because of a distinct lack of understanding of the subject.
Surreal fictional ‘humans’ are the storytellers and authors of the inhabited spaces. They are in their world and we cannot ascribe our own psychology to theirs.
The Chapel of Unity is perhaps the most perplexing space in Coventry Cathedral. It is – and this is fundamentally a fault of denominational religion – a separate place of worship and reflection intended for the ‘Free Churches’ alongside the Anglican tradition who’s Church it forms a part of. You could begin a long discussion on difference when only one creator exists on that alone and the Architects, mere artisans when it comes to inspiration and vision on their part when confronted with such a brief are to be consumed by many external wishes and considerations.

So the Chapel of Unity has a psychology of space of preternaturalness deviating from all reality of things. Our existence inhabiting space.
Playing with concrete, glass, light, entrance, enchantment, accord is something the Architect is challenged immediately with.
The parameters are explanation enough from the Anglicans. They regarded ‘The Chapel of Unity’ as needing no more than 200 seats. It already thereby making a statement of itself as a sect.

To sum up a little on the premise set, the tract of land, the conveyance of thought and requirement of the idea of Church, the collaboration, the statement, of a building together with its grounds or other appurtenances we see Coventry Cathedral calling towards the goal of its brief – ‘Furthermore the building will embody the thought of the descent of the Spirit upon the waiting Church. Liturgically it will have its centre in Pentecost, and will be the Chapel of the Unity and of the Holy Spirit. That will give it a very specific function in perpetuity within the Cathedral and within its liturgical meaning.’

From with one instruction for ‘The Chapel of Unity’ can be gathered many things. In the Cathedral is a division. The words can apply to the whole but are specific to the Chapel. In its awe inspiring sanctity it creates difference. Mere play with materials such as concrete and glass, of height and containment are graduations of meaning humans in cloth have chosen and made progress on choices. It is unfathomable and incomprehensible to elicit the creator in a building on the confines of earthly things.
It is astonishing the comprehensibility is shaped so progressively as a true Journey in Architecture held here.
The Elizabeth Frink masterpiece

For architectural Students to find any depth or even direction in Game of Thrones is pretentious bile. It is a confection yes and of ‘financial’ value mainly to the company at its helm but compare the reality of the art of Architecture in actual buildings instead to find real value.
Understanding spaces is ultimately a correlation of human occupancy, use and enhancement of their spiritual and core worth. Expedience is not a resolution in itself. So where do you find it?
Coventry Cathedral is one primary source.

John Graham

8 December 2015


With love and Best Wishes to all this Christmas.

Solar Eclipse 2015 March 20

The Deadly Sun
For us to have sight of the sun we are first told the light from it will destroy our vision. We are in the light everyday without fear we are accustomed to protecting our eyes by using an aid such as the Ultra violet ray’s filter incorporated in glasses.

Straight away the strength of the sun and it’s association to us is present.

Sunlight emitted from the Sun takes Eight and a third minutes to reach us. The light from other planets is traveling from billions of light years before though we can look through the night sky at this ancient light.
The distance between the earth and sun is around 93 Million Miles.
In kilometers is 150,000 million kilometers which divided by the speed of light, 300,000 kilometers per second then the eight seconds shows the proximity of this major planet in our solar system.
Celestial once uniform
Our solar year comprises the 365 revolutions which brings around each season of our calendar.

Into this derived calendar over millennia these behaviours of the sun have been become patterns which our presence on earth has consumed and adapted to then recorded.
Only since the discovery of notation have we discovered how far back the recognition of the solar effect had celestial realisation, entering into how we explain to ourselves the continuation of our planets as a system both fluid and static.

The static meaning is used to highlight the times preheating us, in which the sun will have crossed the moon and the earth comes between the sun and the moon.

Numerically the latter is highly frequent whereas what we witnessed on 20 March 2015 is not only very infrequent it has a set of appearances which the Jewish faith have taken to signify the timely extrapolation of their Biblical history. The patterns are so pronounced they appear as visionary.

The occurrences of Jewish upheavals are seen in Biblical texts with Israel affected by the events known and actual have almost formed, co-inciding as a will or expectation that at times The Jewish faith believe they will be challenged and confronted with fundamental elements and outcomes as is present at the point of the celestial indicators of the eight moons.
Eight Blood Moons
This year contains eight blood moons in sequence of which the eighth is after our common week of seven duration predicates the new day of learning or reckoning.

So Exodus and various religious tracts are unfolded to bear witness on us.

But how this is known is the greatest question of all. God only knows.
It is not known but merely the very creation by giants of imagination, the authors of our historical revelation, recording for themselves the events of Christian thinking, told with the narrator not Jesus but Moses.
The Israelites being so outside of The Lord God, could not themselves listen directly to God but were totally reliant on the words given to Moses.
Jesus was on the side of God and Gods word was the word Jesus taught us.

The words of Moses deserve and are worthy of faith but are not the entirety of faith nor is the word of The Lord set to divide or set apart some from others. Jesus told us to be aware of the simple truth and reject all other things.


The Easter Time
We are coming towards a time, Easter, when we again realise the world is of our habitation not our making and until we return to God forsaking all sin of war, hurt and harm, from ignoring our love for our neighbour as given us then we are on the path away from God and the pain of the crucifixion is our eclipse.

We are not in the sight of God when we ignore the wisdom given. We are in anticipation of of the words of the Lords Prayer.

We are in the hearing of the sound of the world washing us in the water here since the world became.


Within air, the air, nitrogen, oxygen carbon monoxide and other spoiling polluting gases in which we reside silently breathing until God takes us away from this life and returns us to his.

Other Occula

We see as we have seen on the Sun the formation of Crescents. Some called Occula.

This a protrusion on the occipital bone of the skull that forms a joint with the first cervical vertebra, enabling the head to move relative to the neck.
On our nails are a crescent shape. The fingernail from under our skin revealing an inner fixed point.

The edge extends the crescent stays within us at the finger and between the head and body there is this Occula bone being a sign of the two elements most evident and whole being joined.

Across the world we explore connections with even wider universal discovery exciting and forever making us totally in search of inexplicable and forever creating insights to sit around and explain the order our planet may find itself in at this moment and the next.

John Graham

22 March 2015



Art : Object

We are the object. Nandos or Art.

Lots of Art to see One Night Only
except for some of the lesser works.
The currency of the Platform Arts exhibition Keyframe suggests we take a journey or pathway separately and Sontag like we also cross into other realities.
Susan Sontag ‘when crossing spatial borders, the photographer becomes “a tourist in other people’s reality” and eventually in his own.’
quoted in Colin Martin’s leaflet where the writer attempts to introduce us to this and asks further how reliant a capture of the time and place it actually is? How repeatable it is? Both these questions entirely subjective but for the individual normally answered negatively – another unexplored film meaning. Then axiomatic.
These key topics in the installation are enticed out on 5 floor mounted screens with sequenced cycle of the same film are according to the above reading of the leaflet, its own little film synopsis page, complete with actors, the room, subject , the Irish Film archive, the jeopardy, the unknown behaviour of you the viewer, the money shot, the key frame. As a film show the leaflet is meandering on the content and does little other than outline objectives. Not the artists fault but the editorial of the film is very narrow and unchallenging.
Why chose 5? 100 +- is theoretical as are worn images the archive presumably obtain.
It might even have worked in a supermarket. Or even Rita Duffys pop up shop an archive of experience packaged and all for sale POA.
Do you think any other significant variables are missing from your consumption equation according to standard consumption theory?
Estimate using what you consider to be a more corehensive formulation of the consumption function.
Give reasons for the inclusion of additional variables and discuss the economic and econometric results.

Piled dated goods. Content labeled, commodity presumed, entirely disposable and incomplete and removed from the marketing effect the label induces. Recycling. Packaging. Semantics?
Supermarket as archive, not so strange. Our consumption is cultural, produce is repeated and reinvented, contains such laden baggage dating back to its invention. Labels are King. Experience.
The installation is extremely dull and un reaching towards the supposed goal.
It was minimalist art at a minimum.
Posed as being derivative of the Michael Snow Wavelength, given the gravestone token of seminality, from the vesicle sak, as if any one has a clue what that actually is – highly original? Influential certainly hence the laboured reproductions and mis treatments, very much this a case in point.. So it shall rest. It is untechtonic, unexpressive, unmachineness, pure rolling – and most likely as Wavelength, planned to be shot un chronologically. When did anyone perceive the eye cannot be duplicated even in watching film?
You might draw a distinction through this being ‘film’ of ‘film’ but that is a lame derivative adventure.
The film is itself an archival work without a reach into the organic processes of the room. Taking and making a film into another technology unseen, unsaid, its at the rooms most inert functionless time, when it is without the archivists, time locked, it merely depicts the room, dimensions though partially, the wall and door furniture, it’s shelving, nostalgic nods to library of reels, names of series adored in CinemaScope once again.
Of course reactions and memorial will be different and Keyframe lacks that acceptance everyone of us has when they lift a camera point and shot. Unlike Sontag who never made films but participated in others as an act of disturbing her own biography by performing within, you have got to believe it entirely within her own set limits for the filmmaker who however appears in these works on Sontag to have enabled freedoms. Like hell she has, it is impeccably orchestrated by the photographer who knows what the lens pointed towards her produces. Sontag gorgeously commits this part of herself, her own skill, knowledge and mercurial image onto the film big time.

Sontag was aware and Colin Martin presumably endorses the leaflet writers take on it – uses the word ‘parlance’ implying reading the huge difference instructing the course of ‘transition.’ Film is of course transitory. The frames shown could also been retaken on different days, where are the rough cuts, the trial runs, the debris of EDITORIAL on the floor?, instead we get the lifeless materials of the front and back – meaningless, perhaps that is an out, – keyframes. The film or leaflet is titled Thousandfold it seems.

by Sean Guinan also at Platform Arts is a small display of paintings gathered under this title.
They are intensely worked oil both texturally and conceptually. Sean Guinan begins his painting without a motive but placing a mark as artists will assert begins the unfolding of motive, direction, intent, time, statis, act, turmoil and then that word again employed here as a jolt, transition.
Everything changes as the cliche tells. The Mac exhibitions also going off at the same annoying time are time referenced with transition dealt with hugely. More on the Mac later.
Sean Guinan has produced art intentionally bordering the figurative.
Nature, that then – it has since altered – complete evolution , is stuck to the canvas (some appear canvas I assume all are) in developing spiraling only occasionally dots and in the process what emerges is a graceful very calming set of works.
The sleeping giant without being aware of the title did evoke in me a conscious of religious repose. It is an ‘element’ at rest, animal or spiritual with a skin of many colours.
Spiritual Presence
I had a sideline conversation on the place of spirituality which in the frame of God, does not go down in artistic circles, except for the binding relation with patronage through the progress of art. It didn’t strike accord.
Ruskin put it better than I ‘dramatic circumstances‘ that covers many art ventures, ‘…place of art in the discovery of God.’ Meaning of course the art is the route but is it not also the search of a discovery. Not plain representation mistaken hugely as art. It is a vector to separate and make seem un reachable and beyond mankind. Therefore I maintain, it is the discovery of the artist being conscious of the limitations, only reaching a certain and often ultimately that ceiling, cathedral like?, which signals the end of that artworks mark physically. Transition as Sean Guinan ‘Signals’ to me a viewer that stretched moment. A fixity in time.
This work is certainly worth seeing in its confined space.
Had a bit more imagination been shown the risk could have been taken in giving the larger space to Sean Guinan. He may have formulated a connection with the room. Keynote discards this and uses only a quarter of the space which in my mind is not an artistic or curation choice but bad choice or a lack of communication. Sean Guinan has the challenges of his occupation and is very, very, commissionable. Many Platform works are responsive to the space, the main gallery, Top level I call it. The art therefore grows and the space adds its proportional strengths and proprietorial genus loci – its exhibitions always seem to have something to say of the ethos of the gallery.
The work produced by Sean Guinan is heavy on the medium used and unless the work of artists – the ability to write off large chunks of materials in their tax breaks – given that proprietorial extension for the work is advanced it will be increasingly difficult here in Ireland to develop the talent that is seen expressed in spiritually maquette form.
This is essential for the advancement of the society we live in.
Understanding art leads to so many levels of understanding which are not simple accumulation of theory, electronic or otherwise but world affirming.


The Mac has an ill considered space, the sunken gallery which attendance is for fit persons or those prepared to once again deign to the discrimination of a elevator especially tee for them.
If you go there thence forth you will see the very surreal piece of commemoration in the work by Graham Dingles. His work also features in the constrained Art of the Troubles (as if we hadn’t the capacity as natives to digest our own lives) and in the sunken space a building of memory is elegantly provocative of the sense of touch, materiality, amber cast
He generously filled in gaps in my reading of the work which were considerably given Graham’s ability to explain the intellectual theory and to offer its expression of limits of the subject and it’s here obituary.

Where I got to was the vase or chamber in which the lilies were decaying and emblematic. The amber context I got from the whites, pale yellows and browns. The amber is the amber of corn fields in which the wind blows and symbolised the dying raked from straw. The smell is intoxicating as the lilies give up their life as cut flowers do. The amber again is the aspic sign of plant forms in behind a glass framed cabinet elongated or in other places more formal with again memorial content. The lily is a relative to the aspidistra of many wartime communal front sitting room gathering to remember a family member whose life was taken and no body sent for burial. The aspidistra almost taking the place as it seems to suggest in Graham Dingles piece the already cut and now decaying person of whom this whole is for.
A tribute it suggests can be made after the style of the deceased or as an excursion of emotions surrounded by artifacts. On further thinking and continued consideration and I wish to go and revisit it, I find it extremely evocative of the crime of war, the irregularity, the disconnection, the disfiguring of the soul, the body rent of life. It is composed to build this formulation as an antidote to war.
When the flowers are – Eurydice – Edith Sitwell (I referred to it before in my last film review) says
‘Love is not changed by Death,
And nothing is lost and all in the end is harvest.’
They will be replaced. Everyday a child, woman and man is killed by war.
There are three. No exception likely ever until we return ourselves to God replacing hate with love.
The exhibit should be toured and placed in the joins between all wars and it has a derivation arising locally and in particular reference but that is the strength of the personal that it carries remarkably poignantly.
It seldom seems fitting to be holden to a memorial as in most cases they are less fragile and more direct in their delivery. When it becomes a cause for our concern through its immediacy or it’s greater and greater obscenity of human depravity it is necessary to, in lieu of reflecting through the God given emotions and life’s instinctive ness from the one source, these pieces are an act of courage and exclamation against lies and myths creating such wars.

The main gallery at the Mac , again an Upper level gallery, is below the children’s section. The children’s area and sometimes corporate recruitment hot housing days in the space is in a badly designed location.
It has no apparent staircase and no apparent means of escape in case of fire. It instead looks out from the ivory tower into the courtyard below with its gaudy po-regency fronts. Its rear backs onto the dual carriageway of Victoria Street, all car park and no design giving away its preposterous facsimile architectural conceit.
If ever two new buildings were juxtaposed opposites this would feature highly.
The upper gallery is an immense space with generous ceiling heights and well lit. It is evening when the opening of the exhibition of and sunlight has passed light is softly caught in the roof glazing openings set in the west side of the room.


That theory is contained in text is a theory; that it can be made pretty by transposing it on a medium that intensifies or subverts its meaning is superficial. The he superficiality of this work is that relation.
Possibly that is an avenue to be explored in this very large and handwritten version of Marx’s treatise, a small book on Bonepartes Revolutionary ideals.

So Colin Darke takes the bourgeois artifacts of the everyday. Fine China, White Fashion boots, highlighter pens, cutlery of the finest quality and de seminaries the books across the variety of objects into or is it out of, well in reads inward but you can never be certain. Rather tedious to read the book in this manner even if it is pretty and the handwriting is carefully and meticulously imprinted.
It struck me as having the ‘hallmarks’ of a Turner Prize wannabe exhibit.
Marx’s own middle class background affected his own outlook and the academic in him thought through theorizing on historical materialism.
The book in its beginning chapters and even from the outset call the 1848 revolution a recasting and playing out of Bonapartes revolution.
We are without any other context.
The subsequent revolutions which saw the end of monarchy and the Church’s hold over France is another story. In
Centripetal and Centrifugal
So why this one and told in such a way? I have no idea. It is another exercise in mortality. The centre is a disintegrating set of we are told 666 apples. He forgets the tragedy of the the first and that Engels said of the second revolution it was a farce the line appears on the first tiles but the meaning is unresolved through this piece. The mould of a spiral is always the centre.
What Colin Darke is creating is in fact the idiom of centrifugal politics. The Marxist theory, never expressed by him or subsequently through the so called Marxists is that it seeks a model of centripetal politic reform.
The prognosis of the book is that it again highlights the people are vexed with the economics and factors of that time the revolutionary instinct for radical change sets in is in fact Parker’s practical needs.

The liberal set we know today are in charge or so they believe though essentially they are in concert with the capitalist few in order to maintain a live above the proletariate.
Revolution Stall Holders
Under the socialist fusion of democracy and Marxist theory came a Jewish Socialist Leader, Leon Blum, who refused to join the Left Governments in 1924 and 1932, on the intellectual basis of denouncing any Communist led revolution for its failure to recognise the necessity to educate the people politically without which a dictatorship would arise.
An all important clear message that under the Claude Peguy expression, ‘socialism will be moral or it will not be at all‘.

He also perhaps recognised that the ‘imagination‘ of the people was a fantasy climaxing in the theatre of what in many countries are myth shaped marches and commemorations, the habit forming of attacking the Chamber.
The Veterans (nationalists and ‘Great War’ veterans) March of 6 February against the Third Republic was highly significant and marked the beginning of 10 years of instability. On Bastille day 1935 ‘Revolutionaries’ linked arms and marched in an orderly way down the Champs Élysées then were joined by a vast crowd from all parts of Paris. When it came to Government though the Communists they declined being a part of it preferring to (and destabilising progress) criticise and avoid any responsibility. Their position was strong enough to have the ‘ruling class’ – the Freemasons, propertied people, Factory owners become concerned and strikes ensued.
The reforms these obtained did nothing for the economy of France however and the German rearmament was to prove even more concerning.
The causes of Marxism and a new phase were subsequently hoisted by election into the programme. The ‘Popular Front’ with the communists having taken over the unions were seeking : Defence of Liberty, Defence of Peace, Economic Demands, these incorporating a forty hour working week, an employment fund with extensive investment in public works. International relations were a divisive element with the German rearmament under Hitler threatening all of the above.
Colin Darke is expressing in a grotesque form that theory which Marx’s cuts down his own revolutionary concept that need not ideas drive mankind.
Or something to that order. In Marx’s search for a system for all he takes the element of exchangeas the key ingredient.
What followed was a massive uplift in the capacity of mankind to produce through incredible advances in design and engineering; the location where ideas where the currency every capability was pushed culminating in a political act of landing on the moon.

What happens on this floor is pure grotesque bourgeois art canonised.
For it to be of an inconsequential book, even in Marxism is a poor outcome.
Marx and Newman
Francois Mauriac and others politicised France and led it collectively into the twentieth century which was also actually the cut off point for the pre-held grand order of art.
He said of Marxists that they forego the rendering of consciousness as dealt with, for example, by Newman in Apologia pro vita sua?
He even relates the most important thing of all which Newman famously raises, and raising it is, …’confirming me in my mistrust of the reality of material phenomena, and of making me rest in the thought of the two, and two only, absolute and luminously self-evident beings, myself and my Creator.’ Francois Mauriac uses this to show a large part of society has this philosophy or faith ‘fetichism’ which largely Markism extirpates is ever here. He realises the complexity that is ‘The Kingdom of God is within us’ and indestructible. Francois Mauriac despairs of the – (he says nothing of the other religions Sufism, Muslim, Judaism, others which constricts his thesis) – Protestant and Catholic ‘impossibility of communication between the two spiritual families.’ but he is fundamentally ‘prophetic’ as his time defined it.
Then he follows this immediately with the sentence which has for me summed up Marx and Newman.
‘I imagine Marx reading the Apologia, Newman reading Das Capital, and each heaving a sigh, amazed that any man should be so blind and so absurd.’

The projection being Marxists have refused to confront the that which every man born with and which Newman summed up in four words – ‘myself and my Creator.’
At that time the art world and creative talent of France became inward and self analytical to the extent new wave cinema and some elements of jazz – Einstein’s theory – became the principle higher means of expression. ‘I often think in terms of music’ and
‘As far as the laws of mathematics refer to reality, they are not certain, as far as they are certain, they do not refer to reality.’
Prettiness and Picasso
Prettiness with persistence only goes so far and in France it is signified along with the Marxist failures in perhaps one element. Picasso escaping fascist Spain brought his sense of art to Paris at a time when it had foregone the stimulus and direction as a centre of significance.
The Guernica piece being that recognition of all war. No artifice there.

This Upper Gallery is to have this work until October and it is not by any stretch anywhere near the attached hype surrounding it mainly postulated by the Gallery and not the Artist. It is a case of SO WHAT Miles once sowed.
Bicarbonate of Soda should remove the text and the letters can be reassembled to form a mist to then become part of another element.


The Ps2 space is a counterbalance to art that is a triviality and of inconsequential ideas presented with hubristic intent.
This time Rachel Campbell-Palmer has location and the perception reached through process that is repetitive, creating that place for each of us to inscribe in our minds, the effectiveness of the formulation conceived.
It is extremely and significantly embedded in the ‘construction’ task and the architectural outcome is the choice allowed by the constraints of site.
It is the same process undertaken to achieve all ‘good’ architecture.
As landscape architecture is dependent and this is both realised independently – inside/Ps2 – outside/people.
The fact is it is protected by the gallery walls and its containment which will bring little elemental damage.
Only the people will alter it.
It turns out – the methaphor of a cast mould – as a beautiful work. Never are each piece alike with the – in architecture and construction they are known as tolerances – specification of material and its method of casting being intuitive in the first instance, based on research and then in the act of using a cement mixer and creating each via, a mould. Terra Firma is a horizontal concept withstanding mountains which are adverse to buildings. It does not readily support human life forms.
The scale of the each element is perfect for the human to handle and the place. It is perfect in its engineering limits being neither over massed or slim to be in-durable. The diamond is capable of expressing width or length.
It is straight out of the move away from the orchard of design that dwelt in nature and of the machine contemporaneous structural forms which knocks influences, F.L.Wright Japanese, C.R.Mackintosh, Art Noveau, V.Horta, Naturalism, and previous decorative motifs into a consigned historical narrative with no value in repeating.
Those were of their time yet we continually see mediocrity emerge with all the collected misunderstood elements of the decorative age. I once worked on a project which was a lasting reminder of the Post-modern period which I dislike and like in equal measure. It was conceived in a global context with work concerns remodeling cities. Not a bit like The Titanic Building which I destest and detest in equal measure. Likewise there is an awful foot bridge in Omagh which defies beauty and design. It is a metalworkers dream.
I saw about twelve hard hats watch the ugly bow bridge being set in lace.
Beauty Fusion
F.Leger ‘Purist’ once said ‘ when Renaissance artists began to paint their mistresses because they are beautiful, art was betrayed.
An argument of sorts but without free expression of those artists, patronized or not, we would without the beauty of those paintings.
It does not explain either how it relates to the prolific works of homosexual artists whose work more or less would not have been as involved in that arena and it is trivial to make that as a point for art to suffer.
Where Dadaists could not build they captured shapes and technology combining the place and people within their art.
Forms and Formula
The works of architects such Walter Gropius made connections of forms which were poetic and beautiful. Le Corbusier as well saw nothing new in art merely that machines could extend the composition of beauty poetical and rhythmically, a thing also recognised by Leger.
Vers une architecture by Le Corbusier collects a fusion of influential buildings and objects to produce his narrative of thought for the evolution of the forthcoming Modern Movement. More readily he would have used the analogy of DNA had that organisation of organisms been as prominent.
In my mind it, design and architecture, need be associated in this mathmatical way (health is a great element in his thinking) with the combination of geometric shapes always conscious of their visual appearance and foremost their functionality – the justified means.
Justified and Ancient!

That it seems, is the realm of Rachel Campbell-Palmers piece operates, in that it again uncovers that collective of beauty – the scale as I mentioned above being human, liftable, – plain and regular is beautiful and the act of that theory is measurable in people reacting to it warmly and delightedly.

The texture is variable! the constraints not pushed into it or by the factory process of production is also illuminating.
The bubbles of trapped air on some fully filled blockswhen cured appear as the Italian specialist plaster Marmorina.
The Venetian plaster Marmorina (the word derived I think from of or like marble: skin of marmoreal smoothness.) is a beautiful grained finish which again is seen by the artist as an expression of the process. I love the finish and its variations are very something sought over in many an interior.

This work is very well accomplished and is combining the relations sought imaginatively and almost as importantly, as well as any sculptor may have worked on a similar piece in a Smithsonian way.
I loved the work and it will prove up to the exposure to people as it welcomes and invites you to walk on it.


Catalyst Arts. Jonah King, Frank Wasserstein, Ian studio director.
The words spoken are below noted. They have others in between but for reasons of uncertainty, intended, I write those which appeal most.
One word was added. Rehearse. It replaces the actions of the third component The Gallery.
In order to use space created by the list I have written alongside some.

I have also not stayed on the discussion, taking each word as it comes outside of discussion to form my own narrative.  This will also allow the artists an artist to use the   Words as I give them for their own point of departure.  It seems a natural way to act

REALM       There I was in the room with an expectation of hearing of the work
REACT            of Frank Wasser and Jonah King. The talk was begun by Frank.
WATER    Font is needed by the writer of tales in text. A5 notebooks
QUEUW   were never mentioned. Especially Fjall.
COMPLIANCE     I wonder if I have complied. I have I believe.
VERB    I have remained silent listened to every word. Johan has a
SEARCH ME    subtext in mind.
OUTFIT    Later a security detail will be deployed in the Gallery.
PALPABLY           actors act the part. No one is suspected or targeted.
SEMBIOTIC    I don’t remember the context. Maybe semiotic, signs.
UNIFORM                Sembiotic is unreal but it comes from the
INVISIBLE    vesicouterine pouch which is where semen is lubed
LONDON    This is late rain is falling
MARINA                        Oh what happened
ABROMOVITCH                        lights the night sky which illuminates the
RAIN                            carpet of cut grass making up the soft spaces between
SERPENTINE    lake the buildings cafe restaurant and paths
WAVESECURITY       Bob. B.   water spills and breaches are security on hand
INACCURATE           Words cannot describe what just went on.
CURATE         I take home a leaflet EX. It is white A5. 4no. A4 120gsm.
CRITICAL                          It appraises the work without becoming the main
EXHIBITION.                words to be spoken of the collection.
PROJECTS.       I hate the fact I miss the Nothing Happens. The
OPPOSITE                         Is true for some. Google your life to see if you have a
SLIM           chance of survival without scrutiny by someone.
TEXT                              Definitely. I caress text. I adore words. They must have
REASONS    to exist. Communication without the body is word based.
RATIONAL                  Sublimity overcomes subtlety sublimely.
UNDERLINED     It simply does no need to underline.
FULL             Happens.
STOP             You notice a change from a dot telling you to finish
KURT                              Reading his dairies.
SANDYCOVE                     The walk is over past Nora and green snot. O’Casey.
COBAIN                                         Is lost on an island
SLICE                    of torture fills inside veins
CUT                                knowledge comes with deaths release is only a song turn
OFF                                           start
NOT.         writing but singing inside your head Einstein thinks in music.
COLLUSION              Of the garden of Gods angels overcoming Marx.
ATTEMPT             Thought, allow it in as truth
STATIC                             Lives do not exist. A Security detail has seen you standing.
INTERDEPENDENT                 Is the rule which must be satisfied so sex is
UTOPIAN          Narcissism encroaching outside the body onto another.
EXCLUDES.                    hate and crushes complacency. All else is
ANTAGONIST                       born. Settlement will take an age.
EDGINESS          Is a fear of the negative Jonah library of angst.
TENSION        Is essential our bodies are elastic our buildings plastic.
RECONVIGURATION              Happens to each individual and is sucked in to
REEVALUAAE        ‘ted so much by others they say, lie its every generation.
CAPITALISM                Is harmful. do no harm.
IDEAOLOGIES      are a cornucopia of Utopias underestimated.
PUNK     Is remastered rebellion in sonicses with copious drugs
JUBILEE.                              2012 Is gone.
POP                        art never became mainstream so how is it popular art.
CHARTS      of colour are handed out like chits giving access to emotion.
HOW.                            To acquaint your neighbours with Farrow and Ball
DIY                is bricolage and cant.
MANTLE.                                                              Is a lintel in a wall over a fire
VOCABULARIES                 can explain things more clearly but use poetry.
JOY.       begins with the wonder of children knowing nothing of our ways
DIVISION.                                     Is a lane between the fields.
BEATLES                            negate the need for hardback books that
OVER.              writers in exaggerated respect for the subject they wrote on.
TIME         Is uncoupled from the past and future.
WORK                                         happening without planning becomes waste.
BIG.         Is not good an invention for self manipulation of Edmund Burke
SOCIETY                                which he thought empty.
FEED                the hungry of all races and denounce war done in your name
STATE.              meant truth but gave us lies
FASHION.         A room into a domicile to escape the rain of frogs and
ULTRA.                           swings in climate and live close to soil that richness of earth.
ANARCIST                     Is really Anarchist but it is so like Antichrist I must
ARGUE.             Christ is that anarchist we need believe.
WITHIN            The word is the word. The word is like jazz the music of life.
RELIGIOUS.    Apathy brings sectarianism and looses out on loving God.
MYTH                           replaces truth see F.Ni.Mh piece hanging at St Mary’s right now.
CHICAGO            Is full of northern bigots despising southern bigots              TOTALITARIANIBM     Alister Cooke said much the same of  this

ESCAPE      From hype and rely on your own

POSITIVITY           and when you learn to distrust
NEGATIVITY                  turns to a positive and a critical mass
TOOTHPASTE         Only enhances the smile of realisation.
CHRONOLOGY               is realising words have as numbers set relation only visible
WEALTH     through reading will enumerate the
BUSINESS                   of communication while prose contains poetry in
ODD.      inexhaustable fresh recognition making it a place of
FACT      belonging outside reality with a mind to envision
RECREATE     first in your mind
INTERUPTING    societies reliance on regularity replacing
NOSTALGIC                     notions of culture. Culture is
BLACK                                              without art.  The
FLAG        of the White Star hangs over our arrogance.
CONTEMPORARY     art is full of resolutions on this
ART     as distinct from that
MARKET                           which is our
NOTHING exists without God.

EX on Thursday 7 August opened with the escalating security piece Nothing Happens by Jonah King and I missed the experience entirely. It was to be the orderly of controlled space with the response of the viewer bearing the surveillance and tension of the presence of ‘protection’ of the almost empty space. It was intended to stir emotions of self infringement and the growing authoritarian elevation of security as an everyday fact. I am very disappointed not to have experienced this valued piece.

The above is opinion only it has limitations of access and monitors a reaction that is a personal reflection.
If it happens to fit aspects of your own views, literal and experienced it is very welcome. I hope you are inspired in some way.
The writing follows a night of consumption which was as a day full of unsettled weather. Elmore Leonard has a rule. Never start a book with the weather. It is impossible to avoid it as words are as amorphous as clouds.

The sun provides the light be it from the elements captured in the earth.
For ever and ever we gather light.

As the work of Graham Gingles reflects on the War Diaries of Robert McGookin from Larne his chosen title speaks of and is the strongest perceptive art seen to breach the minds boundaries. It is indescribable ultimately.

At times like these men where wishing they were all kinds of insects.


John Graham

11 August 2014



wallreplica QUBthe process collectsBorn Dublin Brought up in Dundalk and Educated at Queens University and beyond.
Nature and Humanity.
It takes a skilled thoughtful challenged mind to anticipate the future and design responses which define our own ergonomic gravitational sense of place. The removal of artifice and replacing it with ideas derived from the scale of humans and the language of our tensile structures, the human frame, its strengths and weakness all lay out the metrics used by Peter Rice.

The way this was achieved came through collaboration and interpretation of others problems in addressing the mathematics of gravitational space.
In return a dynamic rational overcame those involved. Such was the direct inculcated belief and understanding of the energy latent in ideas Peter Rice obtained a reputation as an Engineer who stretched parameters seeing as he did organic solutions that were timeless and of their time.
Once invented they bore instant recognition and became familiar as only timeless pieces do.

An Engineer asked a gathering to show him how to stand an egg with the pointy end pointing upwards. No one rose to the challenge so the Engineer took the egg and slightly broke the rounder end and placed it on the surface. This of course was an intervention which came of altering the solution. Making do with what is. The evaluation according to Engineers is lost on me given their is a certain loss involved but a human solution not derived from nature.

So where do we begin? Forces will keep the eggs shape. A base of sand will allow no migration of the contents. Whatever is to happen has to be accounted for, planned for so that probably is the lesson.

All familiar with the detail of the Sydney Opera House may be also familiar with the designs origins as Jorn Utzon created the forms by slicing a breakfast orange and arranging the segments as we now view the building.

The audacity of the design. The sunshine genesis of the location. The possibility of the functionality of space. All were defendant on realisation.
Ove Arup set standards which drew people such as Peter Rice and the task of computing the vectors of the shell were taken on by Peter Rice and his team. This advanced in one project new frameworks for structural engineering modeling not only leading the computation methods designed and employed by Peter Rice.

It is true shell structures are now among the least mass intensive structures ever employed but back then the structure was required to be formed in reinforced concrete. Similar spaces could be spanned by shells made of advanced timber engineered shells with insulated layers. The egg is notoriously strong and so is the composition of most suitably arranged shells. Hyperbolic paraboloid shapes not only derive sensual shapes and dramatic curves and combinations of juxtaposed arrangements, they relate un mistakenly to peoples own experience of the nature of shells.
The tortoises shell is made from joined segments fused in little growing programmes of hexagons which abbreviate at a clustered edge skimming the surface as a house made for transportation. A such lightweight shell with the rigidity of armour.
Peter Rice on perpetual pursuit of all things exemplary must have looked at the tortoise shell and understood the significance of how it was efficient and primarily functional. I think the material is the ubiquitous Calcium Carbonate with a special glaze! The colour of the Opera House mimic such natural occurrences of this form. It of course is not pitted as an orange nor matt like an egg but follows the tortoise shell idiom. Accidental or not it is indicative of the Architect Engineer succeeding best when the organic is understood. The replacement of the Gothic and Classic with other solutions realizing material development has advanced 20th and 21st century design.
It currently is in many cases the obverse of where Peter Rice and his contemporaries were at given the over-engineered ridiculous statement buildings and bombastic hideous constructions sen on every continent.
After Niemayer, Alto, Wright, Corbusier, Foster came imitators and the gap left by the loss of Peter Rice at the height of his career was a grave loss in 1992. He had become involved in expression through the arts with, following on from the Menil Collection in Texas which became a galleries contexturalisation of light in a museum, he developed the outdoor per existing Montpellier mountain amphitheater artisanal performance space.
This was a collaboration of diverse minds but it combined to elucidate an ancient form of performance which brought nature in as a player with reflected light and vista creating magical effect when the sun prevailed.
His humanity is apparent in the regard with which he is remembered from his close knit family and long line of colleagues and students with whom he shared in a profoundly giving way the accumulated and soon to be uncovered possibilities. The joining together of ideas and intentions is exemplified in the outcomes seen throughout his work.
I have seen the Paris buildings and know only by reputation and iconic status SOH nevertheless it is part of an architectural education to understand such engineers exist and that they can assist or even change directions of thinking into superlative components of material design forming buildings which harmonies as never imagined before.

The articulation of buildings, their flexure is I think, and no one points yet to this theory, due to the notable Engineering of certain large storage and Mill buildings built in Belfast. The best one for explaining it is the Belfast Exposed Gallery. A photographers gallery in which the spans and columns are so arranged to support heavy load bearing floors over several levels the joints are beautifully formed to articulate the movement of the whole building as when the tidal surge of the nearby Belfast Lough fills the ‘sleech’ soft basin which forms the city centre, it rises freely and with barely noticeable ‘fluidity’ to then settle once again when the water recedes.
Peter Rice must have been aware of this as it was at the forefront of building Engineering in Belfast and the Heavy buildings contrasted with the lightweight engineering forms of steel frames, shell buildings which themselves require articulated joints if only to sustain and transfer wind and thermal movements. The buildings at Queens University only got built from 1878 onwards and themselves were using techniques of construction, built absurdly into the ‘Gothic’ appearance and also where 14th century and 15th century idioms were expressed inside in the trusses, outside on the brickwork envelope with an invisible web and weave of structural assistance in the cavities of its external walls supporting the extreme loads of the Great Halls heavy truss work. All looks at ease with itself and this type of ingenuity around Belfast must have rubbed off on the acutely observant Peter.
What also of the shipbuilding tradition?